16 April 2010

To kill or to be killed

Before I start, please spend 1 min to watch the following video.



You may have watched many videos of this kind on the internet captured in the US or other countries. This is not uncommon now in this High Tech Village too, as more and more car owners installed a video on their toys. I know I am a geek but I am going to promote or sell any gadgets here but my nerd rage against drivers' attitude and behaviour in this Village. You may have some ideas of what I am going to talk about if you drive here. Don't worry if you don't, I will tell you some.

Everyone here should have some road experience as a driver, a pedestrian or a passenger. Do you notice that everyone seems to be in a hurry? Pedestrians cross the road when red light is on and cars running fast towards them with horn tooting; taxi drivers cutting lanes like crazy even when there is only a narrow space in between (like what you just saw); drivers overtaking and cutting across you for an exit you are about to enter; mini-buses race over the zebra crossing when you have stepped on it.

There is zero tolerance on the road too. You will have a horn blared at you if you stop for 5 seconds to let somebody crosses the road or gets on or off cars; or have somebody chasing your ass looking for a chance to overtake, even if you've already been running at +15 km/h of the speed limit.

Driving is a magic that can turn everyone into a judge on whom deserved punishment, a legislator who creates new rules, or a superman with supernatural power.

The videos above are some extreme examples but not uncommon in this extreme Village. I believe the rules of the road are for protecting life, not making life difficult. Driving is not like when you're walking on the street, bumping into others, then say sorry and walk away. It's tones of metal with a velocity that possess a huge momentum that kills. If you forget the rules, please go here to refresh yourself.

6 comments:

  1. Confession: I'm one of the pedestrians who crosses the road when the red light is on. In Central, the traffic lights are prejudiced against pedestrians. The red light is on for ages while the green one only lasts for 10 hops if you have quick feet.

    I've also trained myself to get off a minibus and keep my ankles safe (and not to scream) when it is in motion. Heroes Season 6 should call me for casting.

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  2. I didn't follow the pedestrian light at all time too, of course in quick feet. However, you always see some crossing the road in slow pace and look at everywhere but not the direction where the cars coming from to pretend they didn't see you (My guess of course, I can't read mind).

    Minibuses and taxi are dangerous species on the road but you can still predict their actions and let them go first. The newly licenced drivers are the most dangerous that one can't predict their actions.

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  3. In HK people get their licenses off cereal boxes, it'd really help if there was a proper licensing scheme (not the P-plate bullshit, but actual professional driving lessons).

    Here are some of my peeves..

    * Tailgating - I don't know what they've been smoking, but some people apparently think it's okay.
    * Not indicating - I guess it requires too much brain for some people to flip a switch to tell others they're changing lines or making a turn at the next intersection.
    * Speeding up when someone is trying to overtake - by doing so they're voluntarily increasing their chances of becoming involved in an accident
    * Improper throttle/brake control - these folks will vary their speed by stomping on the gas and brake pedals at unpredictable times, pissing off anyone who happens to be in the car behind. There's a speed limit, either keep to it or drive at whatever is the safe speed for the given situation.
    * Coasting the brakes when stopping at a red light - done by automatic drivers. To combat this, I put the car into neutral when I know the car in front is riding the brakes.
    * Folks with zero situational awareness - these folks have selective blindness when you least expect it. These folks will do whatever maneuver and hope for the best.

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  4. I have high hope on the post title. I thought it was filled with road rage. Alas, it was pure stupidity without much actions. I am glad Darwinism was at work there. Next time the driver won't be this lucky.

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  5. Count yourselves lucky you're not dealing with drivers and road-users in the Mainland.

    However, despite the chaos, there's very rarely any road rage here. Perhaps it's the norm to cut lanes, brake suddenly, cross when the red-light is still on...

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  6. Maybe the title should be changed to "Stupidity Kills"

    We are seeing more Mainland driving style in here now as more and more people have driving experience in the Mainland, and more Mainland cars have access to HK (those HK licence plate FV XXXX with a blue China one)

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